At a Glance
AI image generation tools allow you to quickly produce high-quality visuals by describing desired images in text prompts. With thoughtful use, these tools can enhance the creation of diagrams, illustrations, and graphics to engage students and enrich lectures and assignments.
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How They Work
Most AI image generators work whereby the user enters text that describes the image they want to produce. After submitting the text, the user views the results and can save the image for their use. In some cases, users can save images in varying sizes and formats.
Editing of images varies by tools. Follow the tool’s instructions. A common method for editing images includes the ability for a user to erase a part of an image they want changed, and then the user updates the description of the image to be more specific about how they want the image to be reflected. For example, a modified prompt could be “The person should be wearing a denim jacket” (instead of a leather jacket). The erased portion will then be updated with a new image derived from the modified text description.
Replicating a Style
If you want to mimic a style that you’ve seen in other photos, you may find it challenging to replicate it. A tip is to have AI describe the photo that you want to mimic and then use that description as a basis for your image generation prompt. For example, you can upload an image to Google’s Bard, ask the AI to describe the image, copy that description, modify it, and paste it into your image generator of choice.
Below you’ll find a curated selection of AI image generation tools that have proven valuable in academic settings. Please note that this list is not exhaustive but offers a solid starting point for exploring the capabilities of these technologies.
IMPORTANT: Keep in mind that generative AI tools can produce biased and inaccurate content. Any content generated by AI should be thoroughly verified for accuracy through human review and additional research.
Use to Generate
Explore the wide range of content you can create with these tools such as:
- Comic strips
- Photorealistic images
When used thoughtfully, these AI-powered tools can complement human creativity, rather than replacing it. Understanding both the capabilities and limitations of these tools can inform not only your own use of these tools but also your understanding of how students might use them, enabling you to adapt your assignments and assessments accordingly.
More Reliable For
- General use images where the details are less important
Less Reliable For
- Images with text like infographics and diagrams
- Note: AI tools are getting better and better at generating images that include easy-to-read text.
- Technical images like blueprints
- Photorealistic images, which can often have distortions
As explained in The Legal Issues Presented by Generative AI (2023), “the U.S. Copyright Office recently said that work can be copyrighted in cases where AI assisted with the creation; works wholly created by AI would not be protectable.” Although AI image generation tools offer valuable new creative capabilities, wading into this legal gray area warrants ample caution (Walsh, 2023).
Data Privacy and Compliance